23 01 07

Framework - Surplus of the Arts

The Finnish Art Review

Framework 6 is built around the theme of a seminar A Critique of Creative Industries, co-organised by FRAME, Finnish Fund for Art Exchange and the eipcp in Helsinki, 31 August - 2 September 2006. The aim of the seminar was to analyse the instrumental use of creativity and the impact it has on public sector support for the arts and culture.

When in 1944 Adorno and Horkheimer wrote their famous Dialectics of Enlightenment they also coined the concept of “cultural industry”. In a chapter entitled The Cultural Industry. Enlightenment as Mass Deception they laid the ground for their fundamental critique of culture as a component of a new form of totalitarian oppression. Around 1968 the concept was again put to the foreground to criticize the repressive functions especially of mass media, but in the courseof the following decades it slowly voided of its critical content. During these years it became adopted as just another principle of neoliberal cultural politics: In a completely transformed manner, the concept of the Frankfurt School was (mis-)used as a key concept of Blairist cultural politics, and it made its way back to the continent in the end of the 1990s. With the help of blockbuster terms such as Richard Florida’s “Creative Class” it became a feature of urban and economic development plans in many European cities, and finally arrived in the agenda of the cultural politics of the European Union.

Among the contributors in the seminar were Gerald Raunig (Vienna), Maurizio Lazzarato (Paris), Matteo Pasquinelli (Barcelona/London), Tere Vadén (Tampere), Ulf Wuggenig (Lueneburg), Raimund Minichbauer (Vienna), Marko Karo & Marita Muukkonen (Helsinki), Maria Lind (Stockholm), Monika Mokre (Vienna), and Brank ur i (Novi Sad).

Topics related to the general them of the issue have been dealt also, for example, by René Block and Marius Babias (Berlin), Kirsi Peltomäki (Corvallis, Oregon), Bisi Silva (Lagos), Frans-Josef Petterson (Stockholm), Ivet Curlin (Zagreb) and Branimir Stojanovi (Belgrad). The featured artists are Kari Cavén, Tommi Grönlund and Petteri Nisunen, Terike Haapoja and Juha Huuskonen.

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